WASHINGTON – 2017 was supposed to be the year that Republicans in Washington would finally be able to repeal and replace Obamacare – the federal healthcare legislation approved by the Democratic controlled Congress and signed by President Barack Obama in 2010.
However, it’s appearing more and more likely they won’t be able to make good on their seven-year effort, at least for the foreseeable future.
Two GOP senators – Mike Lee (R-Utah) and Jerry Moran (R-Kansas) – sealed the fate of the Senate version of the American Health Care Act late Monday when each announced they would vote “no” in an initial, critical vote that had been expected as soon as next week.
The announcement meant that at least four of the 52 GOP senators were ready to block the measure – two more than Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had to spare in the face of a wall of Democratic opposition.
The implosion leaves a divided GOP with its flagship legislative priority in tatters, and confronts a wounded President Donald Trump and congressional leaders with dicey decisions about addressing the perhaps unattainable promise of repealing President Barack Obama’s law.